A trade union has blasted "appalling" plans by Bexley Council to cut the pay of more experienced apprentices. 

The council contacted Unite after carrying out a review of its apprentice arrangements and deciding to change salaries for two types. 

It has been proposed the pay for level 2 apprentices should increase from £100 to £115 per week.

However level 3 apprentices, who are more experienced, will have their salary cut from £230 to £201.

Unite regional officer Onay Kasab said: "Bexley Council has given new meaning to taking with one hand and giving with the other - in Bexley its more like giving a little with one hand but taking a lot more with the other. 

"It’s an appalling proposal that cuts a low rate of pay even lower. 

"The government talks about recovery - it obviously does not apply in Bexley. 

"If you want to get on and get job, if you are prepared to take an apprenticeship so that you can learn, Bexley are now telling you that you will have to expect even lower pay."

A Bexley spokeswoman said: “Bexley has a very successful track record of supporting apprentices across a range of disciplines and for many this has been a successful route into permanent employment and is yet another example of the borough’s Growth Agenda and the investment we make as a local employer. http://hwood@newsquest.co.uk

"No apprentice currently with the council will be paid less as a result of this change

“The new arrangements will see the Council employing level 2 Apprentices directly rather than through a training agency. The changes mean they will receive a higher rate while they are training. This will encourage more level 2 apprentices to train with us.

“The change to level 3 apprentice rate will still see us paying more than double the national minimum wage for apprentices and allow them to learn while they earn.”

Are you a Bexley apprentice? What do you think of the plans? Email hwood@london.newsquest.co.uk